Future Search The Method

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Healthcare Cases

Changing the Culture of Misuse of Alcohol and Drugs, Northern Ireland

Future Search helped the Addiction Services community of Belfast to see themselves as a system with different approaches and priorities, but with common goals.

Northern Ireland has a fragmented public administration. Years of conflict and political vacuum put non-governmental organisations in charge of public services like education, housing, and tourism, far from political control.


Early Childhood Comprehensive Health Systems, State of Maine, USA

The State of Maine, Department of Human Services, Maternal and Child Health program, has received funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for the Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Grant. It is entitled "Humane Systems for Early Childhood in Maine". The State Maternal and Child Health Program, in partnership with the Maine Children's Cabinet, will direct the project.

Functional Assessment in Job Injuries in Southern Ontario Province, Canada


On September  25-28, 2002,  a future search was held,  to look at how functional assessment of injured workers is done in Southern Ontario Province in Canada.  The stakeholders included injured workers, health care representatives, assessment providers, labour groups, employers and the Workplace Safety Insurance Board.  The theme of the conference was "Functional Assessment: A Time for Consensus, A Time for Change."

Additional Resources: Conference Newsletter1.pdf

Functional Assessment in Job Injuries in Southern Ontario Province, Canada -- Link to Evaluation

Click below to see an evaluation of this future search.

Additional Resources: Conference Evaluation.pdf

Medsanchast-168 (Clinic & Hospital). Novosibirsk-Akademgorodok, January, 2001
A health clinic in Russia used future search for long range strategic planning.

Additional Resources: medical_facilitiy.doc

Adolescent Reproductive Health in Ethiopia, 2001.
Packard Foundation sponsored future search to develop a nationwide plan for adolescent reproductive health. They included 30 youth.
Adolescent Reproductive Health in the Philippines, 2001.
Also funded by Packard, this future search helped develop a nationwide plan for adolescent reproductive health. Each of these efforts are hosted by local NGOs.
Medical Hospital #168, Siberia, 2001.
"Medical Hospital #168 in 2005 How to Become Even Better ". Funded by the Rotarians. Stakeholders included administrators, heads of departments, medical doctors, senior nurses and nurses. There was a great shift from looking for somebody to help to seeing themselves as resources to improve their work and life. Printed report given to wider community immediately after the conference.
Québec City, Quebec, Canada, 2000.
Seventy-two partners of a large University Health Center got together to clarify their mission and address these issues: relations between the health network and the community, services offered, relations with patients and their family, management philosophy and the role of one of the three newly-merged hospitals. A year later, 175 enthusiastic persons attended a one-day session to learn about, discuss and support on-going major projects from mutli-partner taskforces created at the future search.
Reproductive Health in Northern Nigeria, Africa, 2000.

Future search, sponsored by David and Lucille Packard Foundation, brought diverse stakeholders into the room to establish a comprehensive plan for reproductive health in Northern Nigeria. A year and one-half later, a second future search was held to build on the initial effort, include more people, and broaden the impact of the work. 


The American Public Health Association has selected a paper by Mike A. Egboh on this future search to be presented at the association annual meeting in San Francisco, CA on November 15-19.  


The paper is entitled: "Reaching common ground on RH services in Islamic communities: Impact of Future Search methodology in northern Nigeria"

Additional Resources: Visit website

"Designing the Patient Experience." Lakeland Regional Health System, Berrien County, Michigan, 1999
In December of 1999, a large group of physicians, nurses, patients, hospital administrators and community leaders (hyperlink to lakeland_health.jpg), assembled for the purpose of improving 'the patient experience" in their local healthcare organization. Lakeland Regional Health System (LRHS) is a recently integrated system of hospitals, nursing homes and outpatient facilities, located in Southwest Michigan. As part of a new strategic and facility planning effort, Lakeland the foundation chose future search as a tool for improving "patient satisfaction through the delivery of more convenient and effective, patient-centered care".

Additional Resources: Lakeland_Summary_Report.doc


Sally Theilacker, Program Manager
Future Search Network www.futuresearch.net
4700 Wissahickon Avenue, Suite 126
Philadelphia, PA  19144
215.951.0328 or 800.951.6333

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